Prinz Moritz Infantry

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Origin and History

Private and officer of Prinz Moritz Infantry. - Source: Adolf Menzel and Eduard Lange Heerschau der Soldaten Friedrichs des Grossen

The regiment was raised in Brandenburg/Havel on March 22 1713. In July of the same year, it was transferred to Pomerania. In 1715, it took part in the campaign in Pomerania.

During the War of the Polish Succession, the regiment served on the Lower Rhine in 1733 and 1734.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, on April 10 1741, the regiment fought at Mollwitz. In 1744, it was at the siege of Prague. In 1745, it fought at Hohenfriedeberg (June 4, 1745) and Kesselsdorf (December 15, 1745).

From 1746, the regiment garrisoned Stargard in Pomerania. It levied its recruits from the Pomeranian districts of Belgard, Neu-Stettin and Polzin; from the Principality of Cammin; from the Parish of Colberg; and from the towns of Bärwalde, Pyritz and Stargard.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:

The numbering system (Stammliste) was first used by Leopold I., Fürst von Anhalt-Dessau (Der alte Dessauer) in the Dessauer Spezifikation from 1737. Around 1780 the numbers were used in the printed Stammlisten, still with some variations for the fusilier regiments. It became official by "Cabinets-Ordre" from October 1, 1806. The present infantry regiment was attributed number 22.

The regiment was disbanded in October 1806 after the capitulation of Pasewalk.

Service during the War

On August 26 1756, when the Prussian army was ordered to proceed to the invasion of Saxony, the regiment (including its two grenadier coys) was part of the centre column led by Frederick II. More precisely, it belonged to Prince Moritz's Corps. The centre column had concentrated in the area of Brietzen and advanced unopposed upstream along the Elbe River by Torgau and Wittenberg, leaving Meissen to its left. On September 6, it encamped at Rothschönberg and finally reached Wilsdruf. While the Prussian Main Army moved forward to engage the Austrian Army at Lobositz (October 1), the regiment remained in the Pirna Country to maintain the blockade of the Saxon Army which surrendered on October 17.

On May 6 1757, during the invasion of Bohemia, the regiment did not take part in the Battle of Prague. It was rather deployed on the left bank of the Moldau near the Weissenberg as part of Keith's Corps. On June 18, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where it was deployed in the first line of the infantry right wing under Prince of Bevern. The regiment broke through the Austrian right wing but was forced back by a counter-attack of the Austrian cavalry, suffering terrific losses (26 officers and 1,165 men). On July 27, the regiment, which had suffered so much at Kolin, was detached under General Manteuffel to reinforce the Prussian corps defending Pomerania against the Swedes. By September, it had reached its destination where it took part in the capture of Demmin.

On August 22 1758, as Frederick II tried to put a stop to the Russian invasion of Brandenburg, the regiment formed part of a detachment. under the command of Kanitz, sent to Wriezen to bring back the small boats stored there to cross the Oder. On August 23, the detachment successfully brought back the boats. On August 25, the regiment took part in the Battle of Zorndorf where it was deployed in Flemming's Brigade at the extreme left of the second line of the infantry centre. In this battle, the regiment distinguished itself but suffered heavy losses once more. On October 25, the regiment was part of Wobersnow's detachment sent by Dohna to lift the siege of Colberg. The detachment marched from Stargard to Massow.

At the beginning of the campaign of 1759, the regiment was stationed in Pomerania.

On November 3 1760, the regiment took part in the Battle of Torgau where it was attached to the third column of Frederick's Corps.

On December 11 1761, the regiment was part of the corps under the Prince of Württemberg who made a desperate attempt for the relief of Colberg. This corps marched from Treptow in 2 columns, escorting a supply convoy. On December 12, it was stopped by a Russian corps at the Combat of Spie and forced to retire.

On July 21 1762, the regiment took part in the Battle of Burkersdorf. It was then present at the siege and recapture of Schweidnitz.

N.B.: During the war the grenadiers from the wing grenadier companies were put together with the grenadiers of Infantry Regiment 17 forming the Grenadier Batallion 17/22 (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1756 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white, one brass button, white/red pompoms
Grenadier mitre with polished brass front plate; red headband with white/blue braid and polished brass ornaments; blue backing with white/blue braid; red within white pompom (see Grenadier Batallion 17/22 for an illustration)
Neck stock red
Coat Prussian blue lined red with 2 white/orange braid loops below each lapel, 1 white/orange braid loop in the small of the back, 3 brass buttons on each side to fasten the skirts forming the turnbacks
Collar none
Shoulder Straps Prussian blue edged in red and fastened with a small brass button
Lapels red with 6 brass buttons (arranged 2-2-2)
Pockets horizontal pockets edged in red, each with 3 brass buttons
Cuffs red (in the Prussian pattern), cuffs and sleeve flaps edged white/orange with 2 white/orange braid loops and 2 brass buttons on the sleeve flap above each cuff
Turnbacks red fastened with a small brass button
Waistcoat light straw (white as per the Grosser Generalstab)
Breeches light straw (white as per the Grosser Generalstab)
Gaiters black
Leather Equipment
Cross-belt one white belt over the left shoulder for the cartridge box and one narrower white belt over the right shoulder for the haversack
Waist-belt white
Cartridge Box black
Bayonet Scabbard brown
Scabbard brown
Foot gear black shoes


Privates were armed with a musket, a bayonet and a sabre with a curved blade.

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:

  • tricorne with wide gold lace and black and white quartered pompoms
  • 4 gold cord loops on each lapel (1-2-1)
  • 2 smaller cord loops on the sleeve flap above each cuff
  • no shoulder strap
  • yellowish leather gloves
  • black and white sabre tassel

NCOs were armed with a sabre and a black half-pike measuring 10 Rhenish feet (3.06 m.) in the musketeer companies and 13 Rhenish feet (4.10 m.) in the grenadier companies (carried by the 3 most senior NCOs while other grenadier NCOs were armed with rifled muskets since 1744).

NCOs also carried canes (normally attached to a button at the top of the right front while carrying the half-pike).

Officers

Prinz Moritz Infantry Officer - Source: Menzel, Adolph von, Die Armee Friedrich's des Großen

The uniforms of the officers were very similar to those of the privates with the following exceptions:

  • black tricorne edged with a thin gold lace with a gilt button (officers always wore tricornes notwithstanding if they were commanding musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers)
  • white neck stock
  • no shoulder strap on the coat
  • 4 golden embroidery loops and 4 gilt buttons on each lapel (arranged 1-2-1)
  • 2 golden embroidery loops below each lapel
  • 2 golden embroidery loops sidewise at waist level and 2 golden embroidery loops in the small of the back
  • 2 golden embroidery loops on each pocket
  • 2 golden embroidery loops and 2 gilt buttons on the sleeve flap above each unlaced cuff
  • no turnbacks on the coat
  • black and silver sash around the waist

Officers carried black spontoons measuring 7 ½ Rhenish feet (2.36 m.) and an officer stick.

Lace of the officer uniform in 1755 - Source: Tressenmusterbuch von 1755


Musicians

The drummer lace consisted of a plain white braid.

The uniforms of the drummers were similar to those of the privates but had much more elaborate lacing and other peculiarities:

  • no shoulder strap
  • swallow nests, each with with 5 vertical narrow drummer laces and 1 horizontal wide drummer lace
  • coat edged with the narrow drummer lace
  • cuffs edged with the narrow drummer lace
  • all buttonholes edged with the narrow drummer lace
  • pockets edged with the narrow drummer lace
  • each sleeve decorated with 10 chevrons in narrow drummer laces on the sleeve bordered with a wide drummer lace on each side


Colours

Colonel colour (Leibfahne): White field with 4 red flames. Centre device consisting of a blue medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a white scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, “FR” ciphers) and grenades in gold.

Regimental colours (Kompaniefahnen): Blue field with 4 red flames. Centre device consisting of a white medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a blue scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, “FR” ciphers) and grenades in gold.

Colonel Colour - Source: Hannoverdidi
Regimental Colour - Source: Hannoverdidi

The pikes used as staffs for the colours were black.

References

Anonymous (maybe Karl Wellner): Montierung des Königlich Preussischen Armee

Bleckwenn, Hans: Die Uniformen der Preußischen Infanterie 1753-1786, Teil III/Bd. 3, Osnabrück 1973

Bleckwenn, Hans: Die friderzianischen Uniformen 1753-1786, Bd. I Infanterie I, Osnabrück 1984

Deutsche Uniformen, Bd. 1, Das Zeitalter Friedrich des Großen, 240 images of Herbert Knötel d. J., Text and explanations by Dr. Martin Letzius, published by Sturm-Zigaretten GmbH, Dresden: 1932

Die Bewaffnung und Ausrüstung der Armee Friedrichs des Großen: Eine Dokumentation aus Anlaß seines 200. Todesjahres, 2 erw. Auflage, Raststatt 1986

Engelmann, Joachim and Günter Dorn: Die Infanterie-Regimenter Friedrich des Grossen, Podzun-Pallas, 2000

Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

Grosser Generalstab Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Part 3 Der siebenjährige Krieg 1756-1763, Vol. 1 Pirna und Lobositz, Berlin, 1901, Appendix 1

Guddat, Martin: Grenadiere, Musketiere, Füsiliere: Die Infanterie Friedrichs des Großen, Herford 1986

Hohrath, Daniel: The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786; Vol. 2; Verlag Militaria, Vienna: 2011, pp. 182-187

Menzel, Adolph von: Die Armee Friedrich's des Großen, Berlin: 1851/57

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989

Schmalen: Accurate Vorstellung der sämtlich Koeniglichen Preusischen Armee Worinnen zur eigentlichen Kenntniss der Uniform von jedem Regiment ein Officier und Gemeiner in Völliger Montirung und ganzer Statur nach dem Leben abgebildet sind., Nürnberg, 1759

Summerfield, Stephen: Prussian Musketeers of the War of the Austrian Succession and Seven Years War: Uniforms, Organisation and Equipement of Musketeer Regiments, Ken Trotman Publishing: Huntingdon, 2012, pp. 187-192

Tressenmusterbuch von 1755

Uniformes Prussien et Saxonne, Bilderhandschrift, 1758 (Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin)

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.